By default, a SQL named instance uses a dynamic port. However, some System Center components cannot use a SQL named instance on a dynamic port. Configuration Manager does not support a SQL dynamic port. Service Provider Foundation and Service Management Automation both require you to specify the SQL port during installation, not the instance – which makes it very difficult to automate the installation end-to-end. For this reason, PDT 2.5 added the ability to specify a static port for a SQL named instance. It also added pre-installation validation to check for static ports on SQL named instances where required.
Specifying a static port is simple. In the <SQL> section of Variable.xml, on the SQL <Instance> or <Cluster> section, just add the port as in the following examples:
<Instance Server=”SPFDB.contoso.com” Instance=”SPFDB” Port=”50000” Version=”SQL Server 2012″>
<Cluster Cluster=”SPFDB.contoso.com” Port=”50000″ Version=”SQL Server 2012″>
One of the benefits of PDT being able to use static ports on SQL named instances is that it can now be used for full FastTrack reference architecture deployments – which is a request I’ve had a few times. I’ll be posting a sample Variable.xml file for that scenario soon.